DOE finalizes Loan Guarantee for new transmission project to deliver renewable energy to Southwest
Nevada Project expected to create over 400 jobs, improve grid reliability, enable renewable energy to Wyoming, Idaho, Nevada power to come to southwest/California markets
Energy Secretary Steven Chu today announced that the U.S. Department of Energy has finalized a $343 million loan guarantee, supported by the Recovery Act, to develop the One Nevada Transmission Line, known as the ON Line project. The ON Line project, which is jointly owned by Great Basin Transmission South, LLC and NV Energy, consists of a new 500 kilovolt (kV) AC transmission line that will carry approximately 600 megawatts of electricity, including from renewable energy resources, in northern Nevada. This is the Department's first loan guarantee for a transmission project, and will help integrate existing transmission systems in northern and southern Nevada, improving grid reliability and efficiency.
"As our country increases its use of alternative energy sources, new transmissions lines like the ON Line project will play a vital role in moving clean energy from one region to another," said Secretary Chu. "This project will create jobs, increase the reliability of the grid, and save money through greater efficiencies in the grid."
"This Recovery Act-financed project will create hundreds of jobs for Nevadans and make our grid more reliable and capable of delivering low-cost renewable energy to market," said Nevada Senator Harry Reid. "This transmission line is a major step toward unlocking Nevada's vast clean energy potential and creating thousands of jobs that will stay in Nevada and that cannot be shipped overseas. This loan guarantee is exactly the kind of public-private partnership that Nevada and the nation need to help us lead the world in clean energy jobs."
The ON Line project will run 235 miles from Ely, Nevada to just north of Las Vegas, with a new substation located at the northern end of the line. ON Line represents the first phase of the Southwest Intertie Project (SWIP) which, when fully completed, will carry approximately 2,000 megawatts of electricity and enable wind and solar resources in Wyoming, Idaho and Nevada to power the southwest and California markets. Project sponsors estimate that the ON Line project will contract about 85 percent of its parts and labor from U.S. companies and will create approximately 400 construction jobs.
The Department of Energy, through the Loan Programs Office, has issued loan guarantees or offered conditional commitments for loan guarantees totaling over $17.5 billion to support 18 clean energy projects. Together, these projects will produce over 37 million megawatt-hours, enough clean energy to power approximately 3.5 million homes. Additional DOE-supported projects include two of the world's largest solar thermal projects, two geothermal projects, the world's largest wind farm and the nation's first new nuclear power plant in three decades.
- Edited by Gust Gianos, CFE Media, Consulting-Specifying Engineer, www.csemag.com